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—Without Reservations: The Travels of an Independent Woman by Alice Steinbach
Recently, a couple of readers shared a recommendation after I shared I had been reading Alone Time by Stephanie Rosenbloom which offered a similar circumstance of a woman traveling on her own and finding the enrichment of such a solitary experience. Released in 2001, Pulitizer-Prize winning writer Alice Steinbach journeys to Paris, to Oxford and Milan and shares while considering herself quite independent in her everyday life prior to her travels, she realized that she “had fallen into the habit of defining myself in terms of who I was to other people and what they expected of me”. And so, she began to explore the world on her own.
I learned of this new French comedy which was released on Wednesday and had to share. The premise is of a mother with a daughter who begins to inquire about who her father is. The truth is her mother does not know, and so the journey begins as the two travel throughout France with encounters with past loves and lovers to determine who the father is. Cinq hommes, cinq souvenirs, cinq confrontations avec son passé. (Five men, five memories, five confrontations with his past).
—Paris Was Ours by Penelope Rowland
Released in 2010 this book of 32 personal essays from writers who came to Paris from around the world share how Paris changed them permanently and all eventually became less of a tourist and more of a participant in the magically entrancing and powerful city.
—A Race for Paris: A Novel by Meg Waite Clayton
A National Bestseller released in 2015, Clayton’s novel begins in Normandy in 1944. Thus a World War II novel, the plot centers around “two American journalists and an Englishman, who together race the Allies to Occupied Paris for the scoop of their lives.”
This lovely kitchen utensil is on my wishlist as we used one here in Provence with Patricia Wells to serve our herbed cous cous. Providing a beautiful, unique presentation, use for ice cream or anything else which would hold the guided shape.
Handmade by a glassblower, the double wall of glass keeps your hot shot of espresso as well as your cold cup of orange juice as you like it far longer.
Butterflies have been a welcomed and unexpected participant in each of our meals and experiences this past week with Patricia Wells. While we would be dining, a butterfly or two would dance down the table, as if to say hello. There is something that has always drawn me to butterflies as I have written here and here. And so to see so many here has meant something special (okay, I know, it’s all of the lavender and attractive foliage, but work with me), and when I came across this scarf, I couldn’t help but think what a lovely addition to a simple, neutral capsule summer wardrobe.
Many designers are beginning their summer sales this weekend, and James Perse is one. This side drape jersey dress which is available in other colors offers comfort and just enough coverage to enjoy a leisurely summer outing. Use promo code JPSUMMER18 for free shipping.
Yet another design house, Rag & Bone, is offering an extra 25% off sale items with promo code SUMMER25. And while this sweater is not on sale, I love the idea of layering in the summer. Wear over a camisole in the morning and remove as the temperature rises.
~similar recipe for Patricia Wells’ Chilled Cucumber-Yogurt Soup~
The final couple of days of June, one of the most beautiful months of the year here in Provence, and in Bend in my opinion as well. The temperatures are warm, but not hot. An occasional rain will visit and the garden begins to grow. Markets are open, deep breaths are sighed as vacations begin and a slower pace is in sight.
Such has been the case this past week as I have had the opportunity to attend Patricia Wells’ cooking class in Vaison-la-Romaine, Provence, France (above is an image of one of the many recipes are group of students made for our daily lunches together). Today is the last day, and we have been offered much inspiration, knowledge and delicious food and experiences. It will take many more days for me to walk back through in my mind all that I have learned, but I will and when I do, I look forward to sharing it with you.
Below are a few articles you might enjoy, and while the podcast, weekly newsletter and the weekly This & That will continued to be shared on schedule each week until I return home, there will also continue to be new posts from time to time inspired by my travels. To the many TSLL readers who have been following along on Instagram, all I can say is I am truly humbled by your passion and curiosity for the way of life that is the French life. It has been a delight to converse with you, share with you and hear from you as you engage with not only the IG posts, but the IG Stories as well. Thank you, and on we go to more places to explore in France! Bonne journée.
~So you want to learn a language . . . 12 Language Experts Share 12 Tips to Learn a Language Faster
~I have to say, I kind of like this rule-of-thumb for communication in our tech world – Nicole Kidman’s secret to a happy relationships
~Wimbledon begins in just over a week and there is some good news for players who take maternity leave – aka as Serena’s influence on the sport
~Traveling to Paris? Save this post – The Best Free Thing to Do in Each Arrondisement
~Some decor inspiration – a food writer’s first Renovation in South London